Il Quartiere Tor Sapienza … come lo vorremmo!
FOTOGRAFIE ALESSANDRO DICIOMMO
The Sar San kids illuminate the Tor Sapienza Carnevale
On Sunday February 10 the Sàr San Project took to the streets of Rome’s Tor Sapienza neighborhood to participate and perform in the local Mardi Gras parade. Or, as this ancient yearly explosion of chaos and merriment is called in Italy, “Carnevale”. Historically, this is the festival in the pre-Lent period in which the “established order of things is turned upside down”. And this year, that was certainly the case! For the first time, in a peripheral neighborhood of Italy’s capital city - where the exclusion of the Roma community is official policy - numerous Roma children from the Sàr San Project together with members of their families were active and important participants. Not only were the children included in the parade but they – together with the Murga Band who accompanied them along the way – were undoubtedly one of its main attractions.
Almost two months of enjoyable preparation and hard work in the Creative Arts Workshops supported by the Bernard Van Leer Foundation and held at the Michele Testa Cultural Center had paved the way and the event was a big success, beyond our every dream. The children had participated in weekly workshops on juggling and acrobatics with the Globality of Languages group … and also spent many days selecting fabric, designing and sewing their colorful costumes. In addition, they learned about the history and meaning of Circuses and Mardi Gras in different cultures and prepared the symbolic tribal totems (for their “little tribe”) which, in the spirit of children’s well-known openness to others, took the form of multi-cultural icons for the world’s diversity. Cultural diversity and collaboration was the keynote of the day’s organization: Roma, Moroccan and Peruvian women prepared the delicious pre-event feast which provided the courageous children, the adults, the band and the dancers the energy and spirit to put it all together and show the neighborhood what they could do. And what they and we will be do together … today and in the future.
Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to all who contributed to making the day a wonderful success. And congratulations to our Sàr San kids and group … AWAWA!